Paul Felder has officially called it a day.
Felder hinted on social media in recent weeks that he was more or less done fighting and finally confirmed it on the broadcast of UFC Vegas 27 last night.
“I don’t have a burning desire to fight up for many more years and become a champion,” Felder said. “I always said if I don’t see that title picture in the next year or so in my future, I would retire and I would do it for my friends, family and myself.
“I’m 37 years old,I feel very fresh. I love the UFC with all my heart for everything they’ve given me, for every opportunity they’ve given me [to commentate]. And I’m retiring officially from the sport of mixed martial arts and the UFC.”
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) May 23, 2021
It brings an end to a successful career where Felder was a top-10 fighter in the stacked lightweight division and holds wins over the likes of Edson Barboza and current UFC lightweight champion Charles Oliveira.
The 37-year-old also departs the sport with a 17-6 record as he delivered some classics inside the Octagon including his war with Dan Hooker earlier last year.
His last outing was a split decision defeat to Rafael dos Anjos in October — a fight he notably took on five days’ notice.
Tributes Pour In For Felder
A number of tributes and well wishes poured in for Felder soon after the announcement. You can view them below:
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) May 23, 2021
Enjoy your well deserved retirement @felderpaul ✊🏼
— Makhachev Islam (@MAKHACHEVMMA) May 23, 2021
Thanks @felderpaul enjoy life
— C H🖕🏽T O🇪🇨V E R A (@chitoveraUFC) May 23, 2021
Not only is @felderpaul one of the real genuine good guys in this sport, he’s also a rare breed of fighter you don’t see often. A fierce competitor through and through. Fans were always in for a treat when The Irish Dragon was on the card. Congrats on an amazing career doc!
— Michael Chiesa (@MikeMav22) May 23, 2021
— player/coach (@CMPunk) May 23, 2021
— Alan Jouban (@AlanJouban) May 23, 2021
Congrats on a great career @felderpaul I’m a fan of your work inside and outside the octagon ✊🏼
— Shane Burgos (@HurricaneShaneB) May 23, 2021
Congrats my brother @felderpaul amazing career but this isn’t the end of pauly paul
— Belal Muhammad (@bullyb170) May 23, 2021
— Angela Hill (@AngieOverkill) May 23, 2021
It was an honor watching you compete and training alongside you @felderpaul ! Enjoy retirement 🙌
— Lando Vannata (@GroovyLando) May 23, 2021
Felder always brought it. Congrats on a amazing career
— Brian BOOM Kelleher (@brianboom135) May 23, 2021